Thursday, April 26, 2007

I'm M. avium.
I'm an acid fast bacteria with a waxy coat.
I'm part of the
Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare complex.

I cause a lung infection that's like tuberculosis.
I like people with weak immune systems, because I can spread better.
I'm found in alot of people with HIV and AIDS.
In little kids, I get into the lymph glands and swell them up.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Mycobacterium leprae

Hello there, my name is M. leprae.
I'm also an 'acid fast' bacteria, carried on your breathe.
I like cool areas of your skin, eyes and nose.

I'm best known for giving people leprosy.
I cover your body in coloured patches and lumps.
I don't actually make your limbs fall off, I just kill the nerves in your skin.
You lose your limbs because you can't feel when you hurt them.

I have 2 types!
Healthy people only get a milder 'tuberculoid' kind of leprosy.
But if your immune sysyem is weak, you get my more severe 'lepromatous' kind.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Hello, I'm M. tuberculosis.
I'm called an 'acid fast' bacteria because of my waxy cell walls.
On a special stain called a Ziehl-Neelsen stain, I look red.
I cause tuberculosis, infecting lots of people all over the world.

I get inhaled into your lungs and cause primary TB, which most people don't even notice.
Your immune system keeps me dormant so I wait for years until it gets weak.
That's when I kick in!! I give you cough, weight loss, fever, night sweats, and tiredness.
Your lungs become like a block of cheese, full of holes.

From there I spread to the lymph nodes and infect all over your body.
In the spine, I'm called Pott's disease.
In miliary TB I send tiny bits out to infect lots and lots of organs.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Ureaplasma urealyticum

Hello. Call me U. urealyticum.
I used to be a Mycoplasma like my cousin M. pneumoniae, but then we changed names.
Some people even call me "T strain" Mycoplasma.
I live in you genital tracts.

I get into your uninary tracts and I break down parts of your urine.

I cause NGU (non-gonococcal urethritis).
I give you burning and a yellow discharge.

causes this alot more than I do.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Mycoplasma pneumoniae

Hello, My name is M. pneumoniae.
Us mycoplasmas are the smallest organisms that can reproduce.
We don't have a 'cell wall' around us, like most bacteria do.
Some antibiotics like penicillin need the wall to attack, so we are safe from them.

I cause pneumonia and bronchitis.
My pneumonia is called atypical because I look different to other pneumonias on an X-ray and don't grow on normal agar plates like they do.

You may not feel as sick with me as with some of the others.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Clostridium botulinum

Hello, I'm C. botulinum.
I'm Gram Positive and rod shaped.
I make spores.

I live in soil and in foods like cans of beans.
I can live in them for a very long time, even if they get cooked.
I secrete botulin toxin which is carried to your nerves.

I cause botulism.
You muscles get very weak and floppy, especially your respiratory muscles.
You may not be able to see, swallow or even breath.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Clostridium tetani

Hello, my name is C. tetani.
I am a gram Positive rod bacteria.
I'm anaerobic, but I can make spores.
I live in the soil and
my spores get into your cuts.

Then I use a toxin that moves up into your central nervous system (your spine and brain).
The toxin makes your muscle contract, or spasm.
You can get lockjaw in your face or a smiling spasm called risus sardonicus.
I also get into your back, arms and breathing muscles.

Most people have vaccines that stop me getting into them.